Litter: Schools Must Do Better
28 September 2006
Campaigners Keep Britain Tidy have registered their dismay at reports that a quarter of schools don't teach children citizenship properly - and reckon this could be the reason why school grounds are amongst the dirtiest areas in the country.
In a study published by education watchdog Ofsted, 25% of schools inspected in 2005/06 had failed to teach the subject properly. Meanwhile, a report by Keep Britain Tidy of teenage attitudes* revealed that all admitted to dropping litter and most thought citizenship lessons were, 'boring.'
"Teachers face a massive challenge trying to make a generation who are bombarded with messages about what to buy, wear or eat but never about how to behave, act more responsibly" said Peter Gibson, Spokesperson for Keep Britain Tidy. "But basic principles such as caring for your local environment and being more aware of local and national issues are key to everyone's future and need to be taught."
To help schools inform children about the environment, Keep Britain Tidy today urged teachers to join the Eco-Schools programme. This scheme simply asks children to think about how their actions impact upon the environment and rewards them for achieving progress.
Aside from making a massive difference to the state of school grounds, the programme encourages the community outside the school gates to be more environmentally-friendly, too. It also makes a huge difference to pupils' lives.
A recent Eco-Schools survey showed that 80% of teachers involved in the programme reckoned that protecting the planet had increased kid?s confidence. Some 74% thought that it had helped children learn leadership skills and 66% felt it had made pupils more independent.
The move to going green also increased profile - and saved cash. Over 65% thought it had set them apart from other schools, while a staggering 96% said it had reduced the amount of rubbish they threw out. A third felt that being an Eco-School made it easier to attract new pupils while close on 40% reckoned it had improved their OFSTED scores.
Thanks to the kind support of Curry's as part of the 'Switched on Communities' initiative, fledgling Eco-Schools can now apply for a grant to help them progress through the programme.
Grants will be awarded in significant enough sums to allow positive change and development within a school, up to a maximum of £5000. Priority will be given to projects that clearly demonstrate an energy efficiency element or identify technology solutions to environmental improvements.
Click here for more details.
*View 'I'm just a teenage dirt bag, baby'
More on Eco-Schools